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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Unproduced Screenplay Discussion    Short Scripts  ›  Lifeline Moderators: bert
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Don
Posted: July 2nd, 2016, 2:59pm Report to Moderator
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So, what are you writing?

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Lifeline by David Voss - Short, Thriller - A suicidal woman gets caught in a web of cruelty after calling a mysterious company for help. 15 pages - pdf, format


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eldave1
Posted: July 3rd, 2016, 11:10am Report to Moderator
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A mixed bag for me on this one.

Well written for the most part.

The set up was great - mysterious - you had me intrigued.

SPOILERS

The suicide (desire to live) test didn't resonate with me. Folks - even depressed suicidal ones - have an innate defense mechanism when threatened.

The resolution of Lisa's problem being focused on the father - also didn't quite hit me as she had already detailed so many other problems that made her depressed.

I'll mull the above order - overall - a solid effort


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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RonH
Posted: July 3rd, 2016, 1:52pm Report to Moderator
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Good solid read. Enjoyed it from start to finish, but it did remind me a bit of Fincher's The Game, in which a company orchestrates elaborate hoax's to help deal with personal crisis. Maybe you could come up with something other than the Father/Daughter angle. Perhaps some unresolved childhood trauma?

My best.
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DavidV
Posted: July 3rd, 2016, 6:11pm Report to Moderator
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Thanks for the read and feedback, guys.

Dave, those are are a couple of good points I think. It's true that Isaac's logic that "defense mechanisms display a will to live" is questionable at best. I suppose my best defense here would be... Isaac's "therapy" doesn't have to be all that logical, so long as he could convince Lisa of it.

As far as the resolution, this is actually something I realized and was unsatisfied with myself. Not everything was resolved for her, and therefore, the ending might not be all that satisfying. Perhaps I could try to fix that.

Ron, I'm glad you enjoyed it. Thanks for the suggestion of unresolved childhood drama being the source of depression; that could potentially lead to a more satisfying resolution. I agree that the story is somewhat similar to "The Game", though this wasn't intentional. At first, I was going to make it about a homicidal suicide prevention operator who put an end to people's misery, but that evolved into a company reminiscent of the one in "The Game" as I wrote it.


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eldave1
Posted: July 4th, 2016, 10:41am Report to Moderator
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Quoted Text
Dave, those are are a couple of good points I think. It's true that Isaac's logic that "defense mechanisms display a will to live" is questionable at best. I suppose my best defense here would be... Isaac's "therapy" doesn't have to be all that logical, so long as he could convince Lisa of it.


Good point


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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RichardR
Posted: July 5th, 2016, 9:52am Report to Moderator
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David,

Some notes.

Good job.  Reads well and just iffy enough.

Opening.  I'm not sure you need the first scene.  The pimp and prostitute don't reappear and add little for me.  If she tosses her purse on the tracks, how does she get into her apt?  And where was her phone?  I understand the need to show her suicidal frame of mind, but if the purse goes, so does all her ID and stuff, no?

The phone call to Lifeline is fine.  Issac is just menacing enough, and she is just scared enough.  I'll buy it.

And she gets kidnapped.  Fine.  I like the vase, but the repetitive calls don't work for me.  I don't buy Issac's opening line.  Of course, he knows she's still there.  And this is creepy enough when she has no memory.  He explains it away, and I'm with you.

then, we get to the dummy who's supposed to be dad.  Now, I'm not sure of her response.  Since, she sorta hates him, why does she go all wobbly?  I'm not sure  you set this up well.  Then, we get her somehow finding her cell phone.  If she had it all the time, why isn't she on 911?  And this shock therapy makes her reach out to the father she hates?  

This reminds me of THE GAME and Mission impossible where they manipulate time and space to make a person believe something that isn't so.  I'll go there with you.  I think you have a fine idea.  This suicide hot line goes above and beyond to help, employing methods that are patently illegal.  The secretary will disavow...  So, a better ending is in order.

Best
Richard
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DavidV
Posted: July 5th, 2016, 2:18pm Report to Moderator
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Thanks for the notes, Richard. I'm glad the script mostly worked for you.

I put in the opening scene to try to establish a bleak, depressing tone. I understand why you think it's unnecessary... I'll consider slashing it.

Dropping the purse onto the tracks does add a bit of a plot hole. Maybe it's unnecessary; I'll consider getting rid of that as well.

I agree with you that my resolution might not be the best (for reasons already mentioned), but I'm not sure if I agree about her response to seeing her father dead. Even if their relationship is strained, she would most likely be distraught if you thought she killed him. This made her realize she actually loved him. That was the point I was trying to make.

- David


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RichardR
Posted: July 5th, 2016, 2:51pm Report to Moderator
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David,

I see your point.  Is she distraught because he's dead, or because she thinks she killed him?  In my mind, they're different.  While she might be glad he's dead, she could be distraught at her own propensity for murder.  I'll buy that.  If she's distraught just because he's dead, then she can see the error of her past behavior.  Too late to tell him...

In any case, good work.  You might examine whether or not to make her rejection of her father not so final.  More of a feud where neither is willing to take the first step.

best
Richard
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